Dr. Yeates Conwell, Director, Geriatric Psychiatry Program Director, Center for Study and Prevention of Suicide, University of Rochester Medical Center talks about asking an older adult about suicide.
Howdy, Katie here!
Supporting someone you care about through suicide crisis can be a scary thing to do. You may worry about not saying the ‘right’ thing or making things worse but it is important to take any disclosures seriously.
Some tips for supporting someone in crisis –
- Empathise with them
- Be non-judgdemental
- Really listen and be open
- Don’t be afraid to ask ‘are you feeling suicidal?’
- Take some time out for your own self care
Our suicide crisis service at The Tomorrow Project is here to help –
- Primary care pathway
- Short term support
- Open to all ages
- Covering Nottingham/shire
If you want to reach out, leave us a message on 0115 880 0282 or email us at email@example.com
We are here, as and when needed.
Katie – Suicide Crisis Service Manager
Join the team this week to discuss Suicide and How to Help. Many people who have thoughts of suicide can be helped in getting through their moment of crisis if they have someone they trust, who will spend time with them, listen, take them seriously and help them talk about their thoughts and feelings. Often its our own anxiety which makes it difficult to ask or to talk about suicide with an individual. Let’s get these conversations started!
I wanted to share a useful resource developed at the University of Exeter Medical School in collaboration with the Alliance of Suicide Prevention Charities (TASC). This document has been adopted by the Nottinghamshire Suicide Prevention Steering Group, and is now being used around Nottinghamshire to share evidence-based information to raise awareness in the general population that it is safe to have a conversation about suicide when you’re worried about someone. If you would like to view a copy of this document visit the following URL- https://www.nspa.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/Its-safe-to-talk-leaflet_May-2018.pdf
This short leaflet provides vital guidance on what you could say or do if you’re worried someone may be thinking about suicide. It covers four key areas:
- Sometimes we may get a gut feeling when something doesn’t look or feel right about an individual. We may be concerned that they could be thinking about suicide. This document will help you identify warning signs that someone may be contemplating suicide.
- The safest way to know if someone is thinking about suicide is to ask them. Often an individual with thoughts of suicide needs someone to start the conversation as they may be cut off from everyone around them or maybe they are desperate for help but afraid to ask, or don’t know who to turn to. By asking the question, we giving an individual permission to talk about it, letting them know they do not have to fight these thoughts alone. This document covers why it’s important to ask, and challenges common fears about asking.
- Talking about suicide. This can be a tricky and scary conversation to start. If you’re worried about how to approach the conversation, this document covers what to say
- The document also covers signposting and what to do next. There are a range of suggestions of different kinds of support available to those thinking about suicide. It’s important that we try all avenues and don’t give up.
I hope you find this document useful.
Last week, the Province of Nottinghamshire Freemasons awarded Harmless £1,000 from the Covid-19 relief funds. This money supports us to continue our vital work supporting those at risk of self-harm, suicide crisis and those affected by suicide bereavement.
Trevor Harris met with Katie, our suicide crisis service manager, to hand over the cheque… socially distanced of course!
If you have been bereaved by suicide, could you please complete this brief survey?
In this survey we are trying to understand how Covid-19 has impacted those bereaved by suicide.
It is so important that we understand the implication on different groups of people during this difficult time if we are to ensure that services remain responsive to need.
Please click this link to access the survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/8SD9ZDG
Self harm does not discriminate on the basis of gender, race, age, religion, disability or gender orientation. It is a coping strategy that helps people from all walking of life to manage their hurt and distress.
The truth is we can all help. Sometimes just talking to a family member or friend about your problems might be enough. You need to learn to recognise your feelings before, during and after the self harm. This can help you to identify your triggers and how to cope with them.
Join the team this week as they share there wisdom on Self harm and how to help.
Growing up I was very close to my grandparents in a way that was different to my attachment with parents. I adored them and I knew they adored me. I also had older neighbours at a few of the houses I lived in and I would wave to them from my window or go and visit them and talk to them often. It never occurred to me that this was unusual in any way but this week’s theme has made me realise that perhaps it was. They were my friends. My father was a priest and so being around older adults in the church environment was perhaps a source of my relatedness with the older generation. When two people at polar ends of the life cycle come together, they have many fascinating dissimilarities to explore but also some shared experiences which bring them together.
There’s something about that distance of decades which reminds us more starkly of our shared humanity. Spending time with young people reminds older adults of their youth, perhaps even helping them to emotionally connect to the experience of their youth and to be more childlike in the moment. And for the younger person, they have an opportunity to understand old age and appreciate the privileges and difficulties of that time of life that they will one day experience themselves.
I remember enjoying looking at old photographs and being mesmerised by the wonder of how people change and travel through life. It never made me feel apprehensive about old age, rather, more accepting of it. When I looked at my grandparents faces, I saw the child or the young adult that they had once been somewhere within their lines and grey hair. The connection between older adults and younger people is a magical and precious thing which unfortunately we have been without for some time. We can find ways to connect safely so that this important connection which is beneficial to so many, can continue to be enjoyed.
This is a picture of me and my family with my wonderful grandfather who sadly died a couple of months ago. My children adored spending time with him and he got so much joy from our visits.
Harmless are currently carrying out some research about what the general public expects from text messaging support services. We’ve created an online survey, and we would really appreciate it if you could fill it in! It takes no more than 10 minutes, and all answers are completely anonymous.
Here’s the link: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/TP_text_services
Your opinions are important to us, and all answers will be contributing to life-saving work. Thank you in advance if you fill it in!
Laura and Katie
The Tomorrow Project